Why swimming is the best cardio workout - Edge LeisureJuly 29, 2017 in Newsfeed.
We have just finished summer, so a lot of us have probably been sat in a hot office daydreaming about jumping into a nice refreshing pool. Probably in a stunning location with a cool drink by our deckchair waiting for us when we get out.
It’s also a good thing to consider how swimming can help to improve our overall fitness. Swimming is often overlooked as an exercise simply because of how enjoyable it is. How can something that’s so refreshing, relaxing, and enjoyable possibly be good for our cardiovascular health? So lets whip off the swimming pool cover & read on to find out why swimming is actually the best cardio workout you can do!
It works muscles all over the body
The main benefit of swimming is that more than almost any other cardio exercise, it works a vast range of muscles throughout the body. Your legs, arms, and core muscles all get a workout regardless of the stroke you’re doing.
As you propel yourself through the water you’re using your shoulder and arms muscles to pull yourself forward, and your leg muscles to propel your body. Keeping your body level also means using your core muscles. This is great for building a balanced physique.
Building a stronger heart
Swimming is all about intensity, and working out for long periods of time. Doing length after length means your heart has to pump blood all over your body so your muscles can get the oxygen they need. This means your lungs and heart will improve in efficiency as your lung capacity increases, and your heart muscles grow.
Swimming is great if you want to maintain or lose weight, simply because of the number of calories you burn whilst doing it. Working muscles throughout your body uses an incredible amount of energy. A 125-pound person swimming 30 minutes of breaststroke will burn 300 calories on average. This, combined with the appropriate diet, means swimming is a great way to lose weight.
Helping with injuries and aches and pains
Another benefit of swimming is that it will help you with any injuries you might have. Swimming is all about smooth movements, and getting a wide range of motion with both your arms and legs. This means swimming is great for any should pain you might have, as well as knee and hip complaints.
Swimming can also help you in terms of your flexibility, again because of the range of motion. Stretching your arms forward and bringing them back to your sides whilst doing breaststroke, for example, is great for improving your shoulder flexibility.
It’s also very difficult to get injured whilst swimming because it’s such a low impact sport. Your bodyweight is also 90% supported by the water, so there’s very little strain on your back.
Swimming has mental health benefits too
When you’re out cycling or running you still need to be aware of your surroundings, especially if you’re doing either near busy roads. With swimming, however, you’re completely safe in the pool. It’s also perfect for relaxing because you can intently focus on your breathing and technique. This clears your mind of other worries and thoughts and allows you to be present in the moment.
This, coupled with the other benefits to mental health that exercise brings, means swimming is perfect for de-stressing and taking some time for yourself. The endorphins released whilst swimming will also help to naturally raise your mood.
So, there you have it, more proof (if you needed any) that swimming is the best cardio workout out there. So get your swimming costume out, and get down to your local pool!